Girls in Sub-Saharan Africa face many barriers to attending school, contributing to cyclical poverty and the under-development of entire communities. In Tharaka region in rural Kenya attendance rates for secondary girls are as low as 11% and one in four girls under the age of eighteen are married. When girls are educated, their families are healthier, they have fewer children, they wed later, and they have more opportunities to generate income.
Women’s Global Education Project’s Sisters to School program takes a holistic, community-led approach to dismantle the complex barriers that keep girls from attending and succeeding in school. They provide comprehensive school scholarships and mentoring to girls, reproductive health workshops, and after school clubs. They also host community outreach and mobilization activities to better educate parents, boys, and community members on the importance of girls’ education. This tiered approach is essential for increasing community support and shifting attitudes in favor of gender equality. 68% of WGEP scholars qualify for college or university, compared to Kenya’s 18.5% national average. Additionally, 99% of WGEP scholars stay in school each year, compared to regional retention rates of 59%.
World Centric is providing funding for 53% of overall budget for WGEP's programs in Kenya. This directly supports comprehensive school scholarships for 220 adolescent girls.
Primary School Scholarships for 2 girls
Secondary School Scholarships for 161 girls. Secondary school is where girls are the most likely to drop out
University Scholarships for 57 girls
All scholarships include school fees, school supplies, soap, oil, sanitary towels, mosquito nets, uniforms, exam fees, and meetings.
Computer training classes for WGEP scholars graduating high school
Weekly after-school clubs to promote gender equality for 550 students
Bimonthly community meetings for 784 people
Due to the increase in gender-based violence due to the COVID-19 pandemic, WGEP will provide individualized psychosocial counseling and support services to 35 scholars.
Household income increases as girls finish school and enter the workforce. The return on one year of girls’ secondary correlates with 15-20% wage increase (World Bank).
Brookings Institute reports that for every additional year of schooling a girl receives on average, her country’s resilience to climate disasters can be expected to improve by 3.2 points on the ND-GAIN Index, which calculates a country’s vulnerability to climate change in relation to its resilience.
Girls in WGEP’s scholarship program will maintain a 99% school retention rate, compared to baseline data of 59%.
WGEP scholars will score higher on Kenya’s national exams that rural, regional averages, which determine where scholars may attend college or university.
Community attitudes shift in favor of girls’ education and gender equality, and against FGM (Female Genital Mutilation), accepting Alternative Rights of Passage.
Increase in girls’ willingness to report instances of gender-based violence.
About Women's Global Education Project
A World Centric partner since 2020
Women’s Global Education Project (WGEP) is an internationally recognized, award winning approach to women's empowerment. Recognized as an innovative model of best practice in Girls' Education by the United Nations, WGEP leaves no stone unturned in the quest for universal education, gender equality and empowerment of women, the factors critical to a society’s development. WGEP works in partnership with two local community organizations to implement its Sisters to School Program: Femme Plus in Senegal and Tharaka Women’s Welfare Program (TWWP) in Kenya. Local partners on the ground guarantees that the program is community-led and focused. Together we formulate a partner-driven, highly contextualized, and comprehensive approach that takes into account local conditions (poverty, gender bias, early marriage, FGM/C) to ensure that the obstacles preventing girls from attending and succeeding in school are dismantled.